Sophie Radermecker considers herself “home free.”
With sandy blonde hair and hazel eyes, Radermecker looks like an artist. So, it seems only natural that she is one of this summer’s writer in residence at the Caetani House.
But, seeing as art isn’t always financially rewarding, Radermecker is no stranger to struggle.
“It’s not always easy but it’s a price that I want to pay for my freedom,” Radermecker said. “I always try to explain it to people that there’s always a price to pay. I am free but I pay everyday but I can’t live any other way.”
Growing up in Belgium, she moved to Los Angeles in 2009, and somehow found her way to Vernon for the summer.
“Being in Vernon has helped the creative process because in Los Angeles, even though it’s a creative city with a lot of artists, it’s also my home. It’s a lot of distractions and it’s really hard to focus,” she said. “Here, my only focus was my writing. It’s peaceful and I had a big studio and spent most of my time here, writing for most of the day.”
This isn’t the first book that Radermecker has written — in 2011, she was commissioned to write a biography about Julian Assange, the founder of wiki leaks She said it was serendipitous.
“That’s how things work in Los Angeles. The writing of that book really inspired me to continue my own journey because in Belgium, I was already a journalist but I started my career as a teacher and I also worked as a producer and an event planner but always in the entertainment industry.”
Using her first book as a stepping stone, she became motivated to seek a new creative project. She wanted to figure out why people put others, like Assange, on pedestals.
In comparing her own story with his, she came to a conclusion.
“Even the most boring story has something interesting and we can use that. Instead of putting people on pedestals, we should focus on our story and our own journey and do something where we are and so that’s why I started the writing of this project.”
She titled her newest book Le miroir des possibilités — The mirror of possibilities.
Though based on her own life and rooted in her own experiences, the book is fiction. It’s overarching theme: how to find the best within the worst.
“It’s basically my story from Brussels to Los Angeles,” she said. “The first part of the book focuses on my relationship with my father, and with men in general, and then there’s a love story and then a part about the writing of my first book. The second part is after the Julian Assange book, where I, for a lot of reasons that you will see in reading this book, decided to stop everything and became homeless.”
Though she used the word, she said she never considered herself homeless because she always had a bed — she prefers the term “home free.”
“I really learned a lot through the detachment and really accepting all the gifts and kindness from people. I learned to ask and then to accept.”
She said the goal of the story she chronicles through this book. She hopes to act as a catalyst for creativity and to show how to find answers within yourself.
“I don’t think too much about tomorrow or my retirement plan. I want to be completely aligned and that takes a lot of courage, strength and determination.”
Radermecker spent over two months in Vernon, finishing the first draft of her book. She plans to return to Los Angeles and spend a month editing her first draft. Then in October, she aims to travel to France and Belgium in the hopes to strike a publishing deal.
Though she still has a lot of work ahead of her before publishing — and eventually translated from French to English — she said she considers her time at the Caetani house a success.
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